[Horner: “Not one ounce of me” wants a closer F1 title fight
Red Bull has won all 12 races before the summer break, making the prospect of the team winning every race in 2023 increasingly plausible.
The most recent Belgian Grand Prix showed there is no end in sight yet for Red Bull’s dominance, with Max Verstappen finishing 32 seconds clear of the first non-Red Bull car of Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari.
But while fans and observers are desperate to see more teams challenge Red Bull on a regular basis, team boss Horner says he is enjoying the team’s zenith after years of trying to dethrone Mercedes and reclaim its dominant position last seen during its Sebastian Vettel era.
When asked if a part of him was hoping to be challenged more after Verstappen took his eighth consecutive win at Spa, Horner replied: “There’s not one ounce of me that wishes that. I think I’m still in recovery from 2021.
“And look, results like [Spa] are the combination of teamwork and that’s why you guys have seen Greg [Reeson], our garage technician that looks after all the tyres in the garage, to go and get the constructors’ trophy today.
“Because it’s about every member of the team, every department in the factory doing their job, you don’t achieve these kinds of results by accident.
“I think that it’s a golden moment for our team. Hats off to everybody behind the scenes, everybody that’s working as hard as they are to achieve this kind of performance.”
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing
Photo by: Erik Junius
Horner added: “It’s phenomenal to go into the summer break unbeaten in both GPs and sprints. It’s beyond everybody’s wildest imagination to be in sitting in this position now.”
While Horner refuses to publicly consider Red Bull’s chances of winning the remaining 10 races and becoming the first F1 team in history to stay unbeaten during a season, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko admitted it is no longer out of the question.
“If you think logically, then no,” he replied when Motorsport.com asked him if a clean sweep was on the cards. “But we never thought that we could win the first 12 races either, so now I have to say: why not?”
“I didn’t expect [Red Bull’s dominance] at all. We’ve just developed our own car and we were honestly surprised that the others didn’t do a good job because both Mercedes and Ferrari didn’t make a step forward. That is why we are so far ahead now.
“The opposition behind us keeps changing. One time it’s Ferrari, one time it’s McLaren and then it’s Aston Martin or Mercedes who is behind us.”
Additional reporting by Erwin Jaeggi and Ronald Vording